The Feeling of Being Marginalized at Work: Either a Product of Bullying or a Certain Work Culture

by Nov 3, 2015

At times, employees may experience the feeling of being marginalized for reasons of performance. This feeling takes place when one sees that everyone is working together, and that the group may seem to be productive and is functioning well without himself. Or sometimes, one finds himself assigned tasks far below his skill and experience levels, and notice that his contributions are being simplified. This may point out a lack of civility training programs, or could simply a personal issue.

With these situations, some employees wonder whether they are being bullied or simply are incompetent enough to be secluded out. At times, one may just need an assertiveness training. Such concern may be remedied by addressing one’s concerns to a superior or to a sympathetic colleague. One should be able to point out his problem about his performance and ask for concrete suggestions for improvement.

However, if one receives vague, unrelated answers; then maybe he is either being bullied or trapped in a culture of expectations defined by subjective traits and soft skills. The first speculation is with malice, but the second one clearly points out that managers in such organization are simply incapable of critiquing what they cannot quantify. This just shows that they lack civility at work.

In addition, if such feeling of being dysfunctional as opposed to a group persists in different settings other than the workplace, then one may be needing a help of a counselor for assistance. One may be having problems which need a negative behaviors consultant.

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About Catherine Mattice

Catherine Mattice, MA, SPHR, SHRM-SCP is President of consulting and training firm, Civility Partners, and has been successfully providing programs in workplace bullying and building positive workplaces since 2007. Her clients include Fortune 500’s, the military, several universities and hospitals, government agencies, small businesses and nonprofits. She has published in a variety of trade magazines and has appeared several times on NPR, FOX, NBC, and ABC as an expert, as well as in USA Today, Inc Magazine, Huffington Post, Entrepreneur Magazine, and more. Catherine is Past-President of the Association for Talent Development (ATD), San Diego Chapter and teaches at National University. In his book foreword, Ken Blanchard called her book, BACK OFF! Your Kick-Ass Guide to Ending Bullying at Work, “the most comprehensive and valuable handbook on the topic.” She recently released a second book entitled, SEEKING CIVILITY: How Leaders, Managers and HR Can Create a Workplace Free of Bullying.

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